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China rising

Written By: - Date published: 9:37 am, September 25th, 2010 - 35 comments
Categories: capitalism, International, socialism - Tags: ,

The idea of The Chinese Century has been around for a long time now. But a couple of articles that caught my eye recently make me think that the start of that century is well and truly upon us. The first:

America Is Suffering a Power Outage…and the Rest of the World Knows It

… Just as the Obama administration revised those anemic GDP growth rates downward, China’s economy was passing Japan’s to become the second largest on the planet. While the Chinese GDP is steaming ahead at an annual expansion rate of 10%, Japan’s is crawling at 0.4%.

China’s leaders responded to the 2008-2009 recession in the West that led to a fall in their country’s exports by quickly changing their priorities. They moved decisively to boost domestic demand and infrastructure investment by sinking money into improving public services.

While Western governments tried to overcome the investment slump at the core of the Great Recession indirectly through deficit spending, China raised its public expenditures through its state-controlled banks. They provided easy credit for the purchase of consumer durables like cars and new homes. In addition, the government invested funds in improving public services like health care, which had deteriorated in the wake of the economic liberalization of the previous three decades.

Altogether, these measures boosted the GDP growth rate to 9% in 2009, just when the American economy was shrinking by 2.6%. Such a performance impressed the leaders of many developing countries, who concluded that China’s state-directed model of economic expansion was far more suitable for their citizens than the West’s private-enterprise-driven one. …

Overall, the Great Recession in the West, triggered primarily by Wall Street’s excesses, provided an opportunity for Beijing to stress that, in socialist China, private capital had only a secondary role to play. “The socialist system’s advantages enable us to make decisions efficiently, organize effectively, and concentrate resources to accomplish large undertakings,” said Prime Minster Wen Jiabao in his address to the annual session of the National People’s Congress in March.

Hmmmm. Interesting counter example to all the small government rah rah free market (gimme tax cuts!) rhetoric we get from our resident right wingers. Anyway:

… More worrying to White House policymakers is the way Beijing is translating its economic muscle into military and diplomatic power. … By then, Beijing had locked horns with Washington, challenging the latter’s claim that the Yellow Sea is an international waterway, open to all shipping, including warships. This is an unmistakable sign that the Chinese Navy is preparing to extend its reach beyond its coastal waters. Indeed, plans are clearly now afoot to extend operations into the parts of the Pacific previously dominated by the U.S. Navy. …

Watch this space. On to the second article:

Amid Tension, China Blocks Vital Exports to Japan

Sharply raising the stakes in a dispute over Japan’s detention of a Chinese fishing trawler captain, the Chinese government has blocked exports to Japan of a crucial category of minerals used in products like hybrid cars, wind turbines and guided missiles.

Chinese customs officials are halting shipments to Japan of so-called rare earth elements, preventing them from being loading aboard ships at Chinese ports, industry officials said on Thursday.

I’ve written about “peak metals” here before. They are the rare minerals that are vital to the manufacture of all sorts of electronic equipment. They are running out. Fast. China controls the majority of the world’s reserves. And now they are starting to use that control as an economic weapon.

… China mines 93 percent of the world’s rare earth minerals, and more than 99 percent of the world’s supply of some of the most prized rare earths, which sell for several hundred dollars a pound. … The Chinese halt to exports is likely to have immediate repercussions in Washington. The House Committee on Science and Technology is scheduled on Thursday morning to review a detailed bill to subsidize the revival of the American rare earths industry.

How’s your Mandarin / Cantonese? How is New Zealand placed to fit in to The Chinese Century?

35 comments on “China rising”

  1. joe90 1

    Australia appears to be having a bob each way.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    The US Empire is going to wind down and their own actions have sped that up. That was inevitable from the beginning. The rise of China, though, has come at a precipitous time which puts a few stumbling blocks in their way and those stumbling blocks may actually prevent this century being the century of China.

    One is Peak Oil with, as you point out, Peak Metal as well. Resources are drying up. The second is their population. Quite simply, they can’t feed them and with resources declining their ability to feed them will decrease as well. This will, after time, result in food riots.

    How’s your Mandarin / Cantonese? How is New Zealand placed to fit in to The Chinese Century?

    Our best bet isn’t to learn Cantonese but to become a self-sufficient and sustainable economy rather than reliant upon trade. The Chinese actions of restricting and stopping exports of raw resources is only a small highlight of what is to come. Eventually, all countries will stop such exports as they will be keeping them to benefit their own populations. We have to do the same as no amount of money will replace the resources that we have.

    • Lanthanide 2.1

      China has been going around the world investing in oil wells, exploration and oil companies. They will likely be able to corner a good chunk of oil production for themselves, and they do produce quite a bit domestically also.

      • Loota 2.1.1

        Word is that china has been expending some of its vast foreign currency reserves – which if you look at them in a certain way are only useless bits of paper and electronic ledger records – for real material reserves. Literal mountains of coal, aluminium and steel ore, and other raw materials, stockpiled as high as buildings in secure locations on Chinese territory, as well as forward supply contracts for much more.

  3. comedy 3

    Let me guess those growth figures are courtesy of the Chinese govt ?

    and re rare earths fund this which is interesting

    “China tried to position itself instead as a reliable supplier, partly to discourage other nations from digging their own rare earth mines.

    Despite the name, rare earths are actually fairly common; they are expensive and seldom mined elsewhere because the processing equipment to separate them from the ore is expensive and because rare earths almost always occur naturally in deposits mixed with radioactive thorium and uranium. Processing runs the risk of radiation leaks, — a small leak was one reason the last American mine was unable to renew its operating license and closed in 2002 — and disposing of the radioactive thorium is difficult and costly.”

    http://blog.jmhamiltonpublishing.com/2010/09/23/china-mines-93-percent-of-the-worlds-rare-earth-minerals-and-more-than-99-percent-of-the-worlds-supply-of-some-of-the-most-prized-rare-earths-which-sell-for-several-hundred-dollars-a.aspx?ref=rss

    • r0b 3.1

      Let me guess those growth figures are courtesy of the Chinese govt ?

      Come right out and say it if you don’t believe them comedy. Don’t be shy.

      Despite the name, rare earths are actually fairly common; they are expensive and seldom mined elsewhere

      From my reading it seems that this is the case for some but by no means all of the “peak metals” (see that link in the original post). There’s more to it than “rare earths”…

      • comedy 3.1.1

        I’m sure China is growing, I’m also sure the centrally massaged figures are about as reliable as their estimates of SARS,AIDS, Bird flu from their health ministry.

        I’m sure you also realise that a very large proportion of the population (outside the large economic protected zones) live in relative poverty and that their consumption and consumerism will quickly make even the USA look like an environmental white knight.

    • Marty G 3.2

      I’m not aware of any suggestion that China’s official growth figures are seriously out of whack.

      the extraction of any fixed resource will folow the same pattern, rising and peaking while the bulk of the reserve is still unextracted. here’s a dicussion of gold, for instance: http://europe.theoildrum.com/node/5989 (fortunately, our indisustrial use of gold is easily covered by recycling)

      also, peak copper http://www.theoildrum.com/tag/peak_minerals

      the good thing about metals is they are usually not destroyed or rendered useless when used, unlike hydrocarbons, but peak metals means that our ability to expand the amount of metals we are using will be limited. when you’re talking about metals that are needed for batteries or lightweight magnets, for example, that’s a real challenge for mass-producing electric cars to replace fossil fuel burners.

      • Marty G 3.2.1

        btw, I think the eventual solution there will be nano-engineering to get similiar physical qualities out of more common elements.

        • Zorr 3.2.1.1

          From my experience in chemistry research we are nowhere near that point where that form of nanotechnology is available for production. We are going to be relying on rare earths for a long time yet.

        • Lanthanide 3.2.1.2

          Or, very cheap power from fusion, to the point where the oceans can be mined for the trace minerals that are currently uneconomic to extract. There’s more gold in the oceans than the rest of the planet combined. As for fusion, don’t say it’ll “never happen” or that it is “50 years away”, it could be as little as 5 before the first commercial operations are up: http://www.emc2fusion.org/

          Polywell is currently being funded by the US Navy, and results from the latest test were promising enough that the Navy continued funding. There is very little public detail about the results, however the guy running the project has said that although the results didn’t show it was 100% guaranteed to work, they also showed that at this stage there is still good evidence that it will.

          • pollywog 3.2.1.2.1

            ^^^now thats what i’m talkin about…sort of

            nu energy developed by breakthroughs the ‘Einstein of the 21st century’ has yet to reveal…whoever that may be ?

            It should be remembered, that western economic and military supremacy is a blip on the timescale when looked at over a longer period and that in a sense, China along with India are only re asserting their place in the natural order.

            China rising is actually China re-rising after 200 years of outside influence and the Chinese century could probably be the Chinese millenium.

  4. The rise of China is not down to its being ‘socialist’ which it isnt. Socialism means the working class majority control of the economy. China’s ‘socialism’ was always control by an elite bureaucracy that tookover running the economy when the Chinese capitalist class fled the national revolution. That bureaucracy planned the economy which took off as a result but then found isolation from the global capitalist market led to economic stagnation.
    Opening up to the market revived the economy but restored market incentives, that is the profit motive and a capitalist class that is motivated by profit. China never was socialist but its experience of central state planning has allowed it to resist being dominated by the US, Japan etc, so that it is now an emerging capitalist imperialist power.
    What this means is that we should stop talking about China as some single national entity. The class divide is much more significant. The biggest factor that will shape the future of the world is the capacity of the Chinese working class and poor peasants to rise up and bring about a real socialist revolution.
    Similarly talking about NZ as a single national entity ignores the growing class divide which is opening up like the Canterbury fault hidden by layers of silt and shit for eons. NZ workers need to learn Cantonese so they can speak to and join forces with Chinese workers in the future socialist century.

    • comedy 4.1

      “The biggest factor that will shape the future of the world is the capacity of the Chinese working class and poor peasants to rise up and bring about a real socialist revolution.”

      The party in power would exterminate millions before giving up their control – as would many parties in power around the world.

  5. Jeremy Harris 5

    I see peak oil and peak metals as linked by energy efficiency…

    In the past we have had economic growth by increasing hydrocarbon energy and mineral use and by increasing efficiency (which has approximately doubled since 1970) and by figuring out new ways to exploit formerly benign resources…

    In the future economic growth will come from increasing renewable energy and by increasing efficiency and new forms of resource exploitation… This is a good thing – more eco friendly, truly sustainable economic growth…

    The problem in the meantime is that governments will not recognise the issue and will legislate to try and keep the status quo in place… Making it likely that renewable development will lag behind energy decline and meaning a large decline is very possible… Given that our current system needs growth to ensure it’s viability this transistion may trigger a depression…

    DTB will get his wish, we’ll be manufacturing a lot more of our goods here in NZ but because the market will ensure a switch from a world economy based on wage arbitrage to one based on the price of bunker fuel… If a plasma TV is made in Kelston by Lemi, instead of by Kwok in Seoul you can expect it to cost $5,000 instead of $700 – that’s the trade off… No reason we shouldn’t still trade globally as we did when refridgerated ships were powered by sails…

    • Draco T Bastard 5.1

      Refrigerated ships weren’t powered by sail – they were powered by coal. Or, to be more precise, their motive power was from sail but their refrigeration was powered by coal. Climate change pretty much removes the incentives to use coal in such away again. That said, I do expect international trade to continue but it’s going to be very limited and nations are going to have to become self-sufficient. Effectively, trade will be limited to luxury goods such as bananas.

      If a plasma TV is made in Kelston by Lemi,…

      A plasma TV isn’t made by people but by factories and a factory in NZ is just as efficient as a factory anywhere else ergo, the cost in NZ will be cheaper as it won’t have the cost of transport.

      • nilats 5.1.1

        How do you think someone on min wage will afford a TV made in NZ? They will not and it will become a luxury for the haves unless you save for a couple of years. Also, no export earnings as cost base is too high if Taiwan makes for $700. Also, NZ is not well placed on resources, such as rare earths and we all know what China is doing with this at present. Buying a little of this and that does not work as price will be astronomical. 1000kg (Australia’s requirement say) costs $200/kg, 100kg (NZ requirement say) costs $800/kg as economy of scale is small. Raw material supplies will be harder to aquire as they are getting scarse and costs will be prohibitive.

        If it comes down to ‘bunker fuel’ being the driver, then we may as well start mining in nice DOC land as no one will be able to come and see it anyway as we are isolated. We can use these resources to possibly export as well.

        • Loota 5.1.1.1

          Given that an iPad’s labour content is only about 4% of its cost to Apple, tripling the cost of that Labour content would only slightly dent the end retail price of the product.

          And this is where the corporatist greed comes in. Logically, why give those additional monies away to ordinary workers on the line, when you can keep it all for your insitutional shareholders and as management bonuses? The financial wellbeing of the many is not part of the equation, just the financial wellbeing of the few.

      • Jeremy Harris 5.1.2

        their motive power was from sail but their refrigeration was powered by coal.

        Sorry Iwas referring to their motive power… Don’t expect climate change to stop people using coal – in fact when people get that the oil peak has been passed and oil production is in terminal decline coal use will likely massively increase as well as coal to oil plants…

        A plasma TV isn’t made by people but by factories and a factory in NZ is just as efficient as a factory anywhere else ergo, the cost in NZ will be cheaper as it won’t have the cost of transport.

        That’s wrong in two ways:

        1). It’s wrong currently because Lemi expects to get paid more than Kwok and he will do due to NZ minimum wage laws
        2). It’s wrong in the future because the location and subsequent transport costs of the components assembled in factories will be the largest factor in determining where the factory in an oil constrained world will be – whoever/wherever minimises transport costs will make the TV cheapest

        When oil spiked over $150 US a barrell a couple of years ago we got a perfect example of this: US steel workers went on strike and for the first time in decades the mill owners actually gave a shit becuase the mills were working full bore… Before the spike it was cheaper to make a ton of steel by mining the ore in Brazil, shipping it to China, and then shipping the finished ton to the US – the saving came from paying the Chinese worker $5 US for the 1.5 hours he worked to smelt it rather than a US worker $60 US… When the oil price spiked it was actually cheaper for the first time in a long time for them to ship the ore direct from Brazil to the US and pay the US worker his $60… When we take into account western nations can smelt a ton of steel using 2/3 the carbon of a Chinese mill, if there are lots of ETS’, carbon taxes or carbon tariffs, we can see that some industries we thought gone forever from NZ will be coming back…

        We can expect to see a lot more of this going forward… But the market will still determine the best place to manufacture goods – if free trade is allowed to work, it may be cheaper to site a factory near it’s source resources and then ship the finished product, or ship the resources near the consumer and manufacture it there – it just depends on the product…

        • Draco T Bastard 5.1.2.1

          1). It’s wrong currently because Lemi expects to get paid more than Kwok and he will do due to NZ minimum wage laws

          Except that that’s actually wrong. With incomes increasing in developing countries and decreasing in developed countries the people in both countries will expect to be paid about the same in real terms, i.e. having the same standard of living and for that to be a good standard. Then the only difference will be the difference in currency and developed countries will have to drop the value of theirs if they want to compete. China is keeping theirs low for that specific purpose which is why I said that we should be pegging ours to the value of the Yuan at a 1:1 ratio.

          free trade is allowed to work

          Free trade doesn’t work unless all rules everywhere are the same and currencies have the same value. The best place to manufacture goods is where the resources and the market are, i.e. the best place to manufacture goods for NZ is in NZ from NZs resources. This is true of all countries.

          • Jeremy Harris 5.1.2.1.1

            Except that that’s actually wrong.

            It’s not wrong at all… Currently what I said is correct, that it will change in future is what I said in my very first post and it’s a good thing, i.e. countries with less wealth increasing it – and the standards of living of their citizens… For us to purposefully reduce our purchasing power is insanity, we already have enough poeple living in poverty thank you very much…

            Free trade doesn’t work unless all rules everywhere are the same and currencies have the same value.

            Free trade is simply that countries are able to trade with each other without artificial barriers such as tariff, bans, subsidies, etc distorting what can be produced at cheapest cost… The internal machinations of other sovereign nations is their business…

            • Draco T Bastard 5.1.2.1.1.1

              The internal machinations of other sovereign nations is their business and can change the aspects of trade. If a nation doesn’t account for the cost of environmental degradation in manufacture when all others do the result will be that the “price” of manufacture there will be cheaper which will push more manufacture to that country. Such differences in rules create artificial barriers and other distortions in the market. Hell, that’s the NACTs rallying cry over the ETS so even those idiots understand that but their “solution” is to get rid of the rules altogether which, of course, isn’t a solution at all.

              No, if you want “free-trade” then you need all rules everywhere to be the same. It is only at that point that you will come close to having no artificial barriers to trade.

              • Jeremy Harris

                I disagree, if other countries choose to damage their environment that is their business and if it leads to products than can be produced cheaper by them than us, then our energies get moved into an area where we can produce a good within a level of environmental damage acceptable to our voters…

                It is the ability to trade freely that is the crucial factor…

                That is democracy and capitalism in action and to paraphase what Churchill said about democracy, “they are the worst systems – apart from everything else”…

                • Draco T Bastard

                  Those countries can produce the same stuff we can. Free-market capitalism is a race to the bottom and ecological collapse. This is fact proven by history. The but we can produce something different… is a load of bollocks.

                  If they choose to damage their environment then we will choose to damage ours (and if fact are with massive subsidies to the polluters to do so).

                  • Jeremy Harris

                    Free-market capitalism is a race to the bottom and ecological collapse. This is fact proven by history.

                    I’d say the history of the US from 1776 to 1913 demonstrates the opposite…

  6. Kleefer 6

    Central planning cannot and does not work. It has failed in every other country and there is no reason why China would be any different. Almost everything that is being said about China now was said about Japan before 1990 but it turned out the hype was based mostly on the distortions caused by artificially low interest rates and an explosion in the money supply. While China will continue to grow and will remain a major trading partner for New Zealand there are serious economic imbalances that will only be corrected by a severe recession.

    • IrishBill 6.1

      Historical perspective fail.

    • Loota 6.2

      Central planning cannot and does not work. It has failed in every other country and there is no reason why China would be any different.

      You mean unlike the US system of capital and finance, which for about 2 years threatened to take down economies around the world? (And still might?)

      A lot of US states can no longer afford to pay their policemen, their teachers, or to keep road lighting on. And their latest healthcare reforms, born through the most painful political labour ever, still leaves 10-15 million americans without healthcare.

      I for one am not inspired.

    • RedLogix 6.3

      Central planning cannot and does not work.

      Maybe that was true before the advent of sufficient computing power made the problem solvable.

  7. JJ 7

    The thing with China is that it started growing at a phenomenal rate as soon as its government stopped employing policies which were seriously damaging to its economy. It will continue to grow at a phenomenal rate as long as it can increase its use of labour and capital resources. The thing with those is they both have diminihsing returns – eventually China’s growth will run out of steam (though not till its GDP per capita has at least doubled I’d say). After that the weaknesses in its interventionalist model may start to show.

    • Lanthanide 7.1

      Yes, I’d agree. The government-run model is not long-term sustainable, but because they have such slack at the moment it is the best method to quickly pick the low-hanging fruit.

    • Jeremy Harris 7.2

      I 100% agree…

  8. infused 8

    Wall Street didn’t case the recession, greed did.

    The world is not running out of rare minerals. China just bought a lot of them up. USA is responding by doing the same.

    China will become #1 no matter what. Even if this recession didn’t hit.

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    KiwipoliticoBy Pablo
    5 days ago
  • The Physics (and Economics, and Politics) of Wheelchairs on Planes
    Michael Schulson When Shane Burcaw flies on an airplane, he brings along a customized gel cushion, a car seat, and about 10 pieces of memory foam. The whole arsenal costs around $1,000, but for Burcaw it’s a necessity. The 27-year-old author and speaker — who, alongside his fiancée, Hannah ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    5 days ago
  • To Advance Civil Rights, Oppose Transgender Extremism
    We are very pleased to publish this submission is from Lucinda Stoan. She is a social justice activist, mother, and educator, based in Washington State in the  US.   This detailed and comprehensive source-linked overview of trans issues and what is at stake will be useful for many people, especially in ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    6 days ago
  • Faafoi should be fired
    Newshub last night reported that Broadcasting Minister Kris Faafoi had apparently promised to help out a mate with an immigration issue. While its normal for people to approach MPs for assistance in this area, when you're a Minister, the rules are different: as the Cabinet Manual says, Ministers must "at ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    6 days ago
  • Adrian Orr – The Reserve Bank’s Revolutionary Governor?
    New Zealand's Underarm Banker: It bears recalling that the “independence” of the Reserve Bank Governor was for decades held up by neoliberal capitalists as the most compelling justification for passing the Reserve Bank Act. Interesting, is it not, how the ruling class’s support for the Bank’s independence lasted no longer than ...
    6 days ago
  • Driving Us Up The Poll.
    Rubbish In, Rubbish Out: Put all this together, and it’s difficult to avoid the conclusion that anyone who responds positively to a pollster’s request to “answer a few questions” is just ever-so-slightly weird. Desperately lonely? Some sort of psephological train-spotter? Political party member primed to skew the poll for or against ...
    6 days ago
  • Jordan Williams, Colin Craig podcast series announced
    “Free at last, Free at last, Thank God almighty we are free at last.” ― Martin Luther King Jr. A long and bitter court feud between former Conservative Party leader Colin Craig and Jordan Williams has been settled, with an apology and compensation from Williams. On Tuesday, Craig sent out ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    7 days ago
  • How plant-based meat is stretching New Zealand’s cultural and legal boundaries
    Samuel Becher, Victoria University of Wellington and Jessica C Lai, Victoria University of Wellington Earlier this year, the New Zealand-based pizza chain Hell Pizza offered a limited-edition “Burger Pizza”. Its customers weren’t told that the “meat” was plant-based. Some customers complained to the Commerce Commission, which enforces consumer law in ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    7 days ago
  • Scientific integrity requires critical investigation – not blind acceptance
    Some people seem to want to close down any critical discussion of the current research into the relationship between water fluoride and child IQ. They appear to argue that claims made by researchers should not be open to critical review and that the claims be accepted without proper consideration ...
    7 days ago
  • Climate Change: The shameful reality
    The government has been congratulating itself over the passage of the Zero Carbon Act, which sets out long-term emissions targets. Meanwhile, Climate Action Tracker has the shameful reality: those targets are insufficient:While New Zealand is showing leadership by having passed the world’s second-ever Zero Carbon Act in November 2019, under ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • More secrecy
    The government introduced a Racing Industry Bill today. As an urban who horse racing as pointless-to-cruel, and gambling as a tax on stupidity and/or hope, this isn't normally a bill which would interest me in the slightest, beyond grumpiness at more government money for a dying industry. But there is ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    7 days ago
  • Unlikely online bully, Liam Hehir
    Check. Check. One, two, three, four. Is this thing ON? Hello readers, I logged in last night (yeah, it’s been a while) to mark THE END of the landmark legal case, Jordan Williams v Colin Craig, which (gulp) reached The Supreme Court, in which New Zealand’s most-defamed man was suing the politician he ...
    The PaepaeBy Peter Aranyi
    7 days ago
  • The Birth Of Israel: Wrong At The Right Time.
    Before The Birth: Israel’s most fervent supporters set their clocks ticking in Biblical times. They cite the kingdoms of David and Solomon as proof that, in the words of the Exodus movie’s theme-song: “This land is mine.” The majority of Israel’s backers, however, start their clocks in 1933 – the year Adolf ...
    7 days ago
  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the Year 2019: Korero phase
    In an unreliable, strange and confusing world, Public Address is proud to present a measure of comfort and stability by annually asking everyone what words or phrases sum up the year that's been – and then giving some of them consumer goods as prizes for being clever or simply lucky.Well, ...
    1 week ago
  • Generalist to specialist
    Both my parents are pretty handy – and they seem to have the right tools for most jobs in the garage and they know how to fix practically anything. A similar story could be told about their generation’s experience in the workforce – being a generalist was not unusual and ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • A “coincidence”
    When it was revealed that NZ First had tried to enrich itself from public office via the Provoncial Growth Fund, the Prime Minister assured us that everything was OK as Shane Jones, the Minister responsible for the fund, had recused himself. Except it seems that that recusal came very late ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Member’s Day
    Today is a Member's Day, and probably the last one of the year. After the marathon of the End of Life Choice Act, most of the bills up for debate today are uncontentious. First up is the second reading of Chlöe Swarbrick's Election Access Fund Bill. This will be followed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Worse than I thought
    The Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Committee has reported back on the government's odious and tyrannical control orders bill. As expected, the fraudulent select committee process has made no significant changes (partly because they couldn't agree, but mostly because it was a stitch-up from the start, with no intention of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • The cannabis bill and the referendum
    Yesterday, the government released its draft Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill, which will be put to a non-binding referendum at the next election. I'm not a drug policy expert, but Russell Brown is, and he thinks its pretty good. And pretty obviously, it will be a massive improvement on the ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Hard News: The Cannabis Legalisation and Control Bill: pretty good so far
    As you're probably aware, the draft bill outlining the proposed legal cannabis regime to be put to a referendum late next year was published yesterday, and has already attracted a flurry of comment. It's notable that a good deal of the comment is about proposals that aren't actually new.A minimum ...
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: Alignment
    One of the big problems in New Zealand climate change policy is the government working at cross-purposes with itself. It wants to reduce fossil fuel use, but encourages oil and gas exploration. It wants to reduce transport emissions, but then builds enormous new roads. The problem could be avoided if ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • How climate change will affect food production and security
    Climate Explained is a collaboration between The Conversation, Stuff and the New Zealand Science Media Centre to answer your questions about climate change. If you have a question you’d like an expert to answer, please send it to climate.change@stuff.co.nz According to the United Nations, food shortages are a threat ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • More bad faith
    Last year, the government announced it was ending offshore oil exploration by no longer issuing new permits. The idea was that the industry would then die off as permits expired. Except almost immediately the government revealed its bad faith, by saying they would extend permits and alter conditions to keep ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Banning foreign money from our elections
    The government has said it will ban foreign donations to political parties and candidates, and will be introducing legislation to be passed under all-stages urgency this afternoon. While I agree with the goal, I don't see a particular case for urgency, unless the government is concerned about a flood of ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Reforming the Education Acts
    The government introduced the Education and Training Bill to Parliament yesterday. Its a massive bill, which replaces both existing Education Acts, as well as various other bits of legislation (including some which are still proceeding through the House). I'll leave the serious analysis to teachers and people who actually know ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Bite-sized learning
    Amelia SharmanThere’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to micro-credentials, those bits of bite-sized learning that can help workers stay on top of technological change.  What’s a micro-credential? While definitions vary, micro-credentials can be understood as short courses that allow people to learn new skills or have an existing competency recognised. ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    1 week ago
  • “Not The Labour Party We Once Knew.”
    All Smiles Now: Claire Szabo is taking up her presidential role after serving as the CEO of Habitat For Humanity. Which is absolutely perfect! After KiwiBuild was so comprehensively mismanaged by Phil Twyford, the party has not only elected a new president from a thoroughly respectable not-for-profit, but one who ...
    1 week ago
  • Marxist versus liberal methodology on transgender ideology/identity politics
    While much of the NZ left has transitioned to postmodern and identity politics in relation to transgender ideology, there are some very good articles about that deploy Marxist methodology in relation to this subject.  The one below is from the British marxist group Counterfire and appeared on their site here ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    1 week ago
  • Book review: The Farm by Joanne Ramos
    by Daphna Whitmore At Golden Oaks, a luxurious country retreat in the Hudson Valley, pregnant women have the best care money can buy. From the organic food, personalised exercise programmes, private yoga instruction and daily massages Golden Oaks looks like a country lodge for the upper class. Set some time ...
    RedlineBy Daphna
    1 week ago
  • Loosening the purse strings
    When Labour was running for election in 2017, it felt it needed to demonstrate "fiscal responsibility" and signed itself up to masochistic "budget responsibility rules". It was a fool's errand: the sorts of voters who demand fiscal responsibility are also the sorts of voters who believe that labour can never ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • Climate Change: How to get there
    Writing in Stuff, Joel MacManus looks at what we need to do to meet the Zero Carbon Act's targets. The core of it:1. Convert 85 per cent of vehicles on the road to electric. 2. Eliminate fossil fuels from all industrial heating up to 300 degrees Celsius. 3. Double our ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    1 week ago
  • anti-vaxxers in a measles epidemic: so many ways to be untruthful
    “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa over the past twenty-four hours. “Anti-vaxers are a pro-death movement,” those comments from Dr Helen Petousis-Harris speaking about six more Measles related deaths in Samoa ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    1 week ago
  • Is Youth Vaping a Problem in New Zealand?
    Professors Janet Hoek and Richard Edwards, Emeritus Professor Phil Gendall, Jude Ball, Dr Judith McCool, Anaru Waa, Dr Becky Freeman Recent media reports have presented conflicting evidence on youth vaping in NZ. While some NZ school principals report concerns about increasing vaping on school grounds and confiscating vapes, ASH Year ...
    SciBlogsBy Public Health Expert
    1 week ago
  • In pursuit of “Freedom and Democracy”: Forever Wars in “America’s backyard”.
    “America the Beautiful!”, staunch defender of democracy, freedom and… a whole lot of despotic tyrants that play nice with what is called “the Washington Consensus.” America is indeed capable of immense good, but like any Nation, and most assuredly any aspirant to the mantle of Empire, great, immense evil. All ...
    exhALANtBy exhalantblog
    2 weeks ago
  • November ’19 – NZ blogs sitemeter ranking
    Image credit: The beginner’s guide to blogging I notice a few regulars no longer allow public access to the site counters. This may happen accidentally when the blog format is altered. If your blog is ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Whodunnit? Finding the mystery 1080 testing lab
    1080 is used to control pests in NZ. Its use is contested by a noisy few. A new report claims high levels of 1080 in rats washed up on a beach. Flora and Fauna of Aotearoa (F&F) won’t name the laboratory that did their testing. It has sparked a hunt ...
    SciBlogsBy Grant Jacobs
    2 weeks ago
  • Authoritarian Friends, Democratic Enemies.
    What Kind Of Empire? The thing for Kiwis to decide is what kind of empire they want to belong to. The kind that, while offering its own citizens democratic rights, demands absolute obedience from its “friends”? Or, the kind that, while authoritarian at home, takes a relaxed attitude to the ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Boris Johnson Goes Down
    It hasn't been a good week for the Conservatives, pollwise.  All major recent polls are showing their lead shrinking.Comparing each pollster's current (between 29/11 and 22/11) and previous most recent poll.Com Res - Conservative lead down 3 points.You Gov - Conservative lead down 1 point.Kantar - Conservative lead down 4 ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Interesting
    Within quick succession, Countdown maths wizard and twitterer Rachel Riley, alleged comedian David Baddiel and prominent lawyer Andrew Julius have all expressed very similar opinions / ideas:
    These #3billboards are going round London today, organised by ex-Labour people, horrified by what their party has become. Their principles haven’t changed, they’re ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Damn the Polls
    So, there have been a bunch of bad polls out for Labour, and even the Leftie's friend, Survation, have recently given the Conservatives a rip-snorting 11% lead.  You Gov's much vaunted MRP poll - which pretty much nailed the result in 2015 - is currently predicting a comfortable majority for ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Climate Change: Europe declares an emergency
    The European Parliament has voted overwhelmingly to declare a climate emergency:The European parliament has declared a global “climate and environmental emergency” as it urged all EU countries to commit to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The vote came as scientists warned that the world may have already crossed ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago
  • A Bi-Partisan Commitment To X-ing “P”.
    Pure Fear: Worse than Heroin, this drug’s addictive power was terrifying. People under its influence didn’t drift off to Elysium. Nor did it persuade inadequate individuals that they could conquer the world. No, this drug – pure crystal methamphetamine, “P” for short – unlocked the gates of Hell itself. It ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Advice about measles: when ignorance is definitely not a virtue
    As the rate of measles infection, and of deaths, continues to climb in Samoa, antivaccination activists infectious disease proponents seem intent on doubling down on their claims about vaccination. (Check pretty much any news-media FB post about measles & you’ll see exactly what I mean.) Unfortunately, some of them have ...
    SciBlogsBy Alison Campbell
    2 weeks ago
  • Samoa’s devastating measles epidemic – why and how bad?
    Samoa are experiencing a devastating measles epidemic. It is possible that 2-3% of the population will ultimately be infected by the time it is over. Hopefully the mass immunisation campaign currently under way can mitigate some of this, for many it is too late. The first question many people ask ...
    SciBlogsBy Helen Petousis Harris
    2 weeks ago
  • “It’s basic rights we are defending”: the Meghan Murphy interview
    Meghan Murphy is a Canadian writer and journalist She runs the Feminist Current website which she founded in 2012.  She was a keynote speaker for the Feminism2020 conference in Wellington this month. When Massey University cancelled the original venue booking Feminism2020 was hosted in Parliament by MP David Seymour. Meghan ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • A week of protests in Colombia
    Text and photos by Gearóid Ó Loingsigh Colombia has lived through one week of protests against the economic measures taken by president Duque. What looked like a protest that would fizzle out after its first day on November 21st is still going strong. Part of the reason for the continuance ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Anti-neutrinos–When you are your own opposite
    Around a million billion pass through you each second, almost all originating from our sun, but few of them are likely to interact with you enroute. I was reading in a physics magazine earlier in the week about the nature of neutrinos. These are extremely numerous elementary particles, but only ...
    SciBlogsBy Marcus Wilson
    2 weeks ago
  • Exoplanets, life, and the danger of a single study
    By Pallab Ghosh There’s value in covering new research advances, even when the underlying science is unsettled. But there are also risks. The recent announcement that scientists discovered water on the planet K2-18b, 110 light years away, prompted a media swoon. News stories, including a piece written by me, billed ...
    SciBlogsBy Guest Author
    2 weeks ago
  • The Intersex Continuum
    I wrote this review a couple of years ago when I was still in the process of getting my head around the politics of transgenderism, and specifically the claim that intersex conditions lend support to the notion that sex is ‘socially constructed’. Since writing this review I have come across ...
    RedlineBy Admin
    2 weeks ago
  • Leaving us with the bill
    Two weeks ago, Malaysian-owned oil company Tamarind declared it was insolvent and went into administration after a failed offshore drilling campaign. Tamarind apparently specialises in buying oil fields at the end of their life and trying to squeeze out the last few drops of pollution. But part of their scam ...
    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Surgical mesh restorative justice report received
    Associate Health Minister Julie Anne Genter has received the report back from a surgical mesh restorative justice process undertaken by Victoria University. The process heard stories, either in person or online submission, from more than 600 people affected by surgical mesh. “The report made for heart-breaking and confronting reading,” says ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    29 mins ago
  • The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai a milestone for drinking water safety
    The Water Services Regulator Bill – Taumata Arowai , introduced to Parliament today, is a milestone for drinking water safety in New Zealand and will help improve environmental outcomes for urban waterways, rivers and lakes.  “This is a breakthrough for New Zealanders in terms of providing safe drinking water throughout ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • Speech to new direction for criminal justice reform announcement
    Kia ora koutouE ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā matā wakaTēnā koutou katoaHaere ngā, moe maiKoutou ma ngā Rangatira Ko Anaru ahauKo au te Minita mo ngā TureHe Honore tino nui kei roto I ahau No reira tena koutou katoa Today, we are releasing two reports that are the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • New direction for criminal justice reform
    The Government is looking to turn around the long-term challenges of criminal justice by taking a new approach to break the cycle of offending to ensure there are fewer victims of crime. Justice Minister Andrew Little released two reports today, Turuki! Turuki! from Te Uepū Hāpai I te Ora, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 hours ago
  • New law sets up $300m Venture Capital Fund
    New Zealand firms expanding beyond the start-up phase are set for more support after today’s passage of the Venture Capital Fund Bill, Associate Finance Minister David Parker said. The Bill, which establishes a $300 million Venture Capital Fund, puts in place a key initiative of the Wellbeing Budget’s economic package. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    17 hours ago
  • New Zealand’s National Statement to COP25
    E ngā mana, e ngā reo, e ngā iwi, e ngā rau rangatira mā. Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. Señora Presidenta, Excellencies, Delegates. International action A common thread that runs through the Paris Agreement is the commitment we have made to each other to do what we can to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    19 hours ago
  • $12 billion in extra infrastructure investment
    The Government is lifting capital investment to the highest level in more than 20 years as it takes the next step to future-proof New Zealand. Finance Minister Grant Robertson has announced $12 billion of new investment, with $8 billion for specific capital projects and $4 billion to be added to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Strong economy, careful spending gives $12bn of surpluses
    The Government is forecast to run $12 billion worth of surpluses across the four years to 2023/24 as the economy continues to grow. The surpluses will help fund day-to-day capital requirements each year. These include fixing leaky hospitals, building new classrooms to cover population growth and take pressure off class ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Priorities for 2020 Wellbeing Budget outlined
    Budget 2020 will continue the Coalition Government’s focus on tackling the long-term challenges facing New Zealand while also investing to future-proof the economy. When the Government took office in 2017 it was left with crumbling infrastructure, severe underinvestment in public services, degraded rivers and lakes, a housing crisis and rising ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    22 hours ago
  • Minister welcomes data-rich coastline mapping tool
    The Minister responsible for the Marine and Coastal Area (Takutai Moana) Act 2011 (te Takutai Moana Act 2011), Andrew Little has welcomed the launch of an online geospatial tool that provides data-rich, dynamic coastline maps that will significantly boost research and evidence-gathering under the Act. Te Kete Kōrero a Te ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Chief Victims Advisor reappointed for a further two years
    The Chief Victims Advisor to Government Dr Kim McGregor, QSO, has been reappointed in her role for a further two years. Dr McGregor has held the role since it was established in November 2015. She provides independent advice to government on how to improve the criminal justice system for victims. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • New Zealand tsunami monitoring and detection system to be established
    Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Civil Defence Minister Peeni Henare have today announced the deployment of a network of DART (Deep-ocean Assessment and Reporting of Tsunami) buoys. “New Zealand and the Pacific region are particularly vulnerable to natural disasters. It is vital we have adequate warning systems in place,” ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • DART Buoys Announcement
    DART Buoys Announcement Aotea Wharf, 9.30am 11 December 2019   Acknowledgements Acknowledgements to Minister for Civil Defence Hon Peeni Henare also here today. White Island It is with regret that this event shadows the tragic natural disaster two days ago. The volcanic eruptions on White Island have claimed 5 lives, ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 day ago
  • Final steps for racing industry reform
    Racing Minister Winston Peters has welcomed the first reading of the Racing Industry Bill in parliament today. This is the second of two Bills that have been introduced this year to revitalise New Zealand’s racing industry. “Our domestic racing industry has been in serious decline.  The Government is committed to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Funding to promote New Zealand Sign Language initiatives
    Minister for Disability Issues, Carmel Sepuloni, is pleased to announce that $291,321 is to be awarded to national and local community initiatives to maintain and promote the use of New Zealand Sign Language (NZSL). “New Zealand is one of the few countries  in the world where Sign Language is an ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • How New Zealand defines and recognises veterans
    Minister for Veterans Ron Mark has announced today the Coalition Government’s initial response to work completed by the independent statutory body, the Veterans’ Advisory Board. “When Professor Ron Paterson completed his review of the Veterans’ Support Act in 2018, he made a number of recommendations, including one which I referred ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 days ago
  • Government to fund lion’s share of Ohakea water scheme
    The Government will fund the bulk of the cost of a rural water supply for the Ohakea community affected by PFAS contamination, Environment Minister David Parker announced today at a meeting of local residents. This new water scheme will provide a reliable and clean source of drinking water to the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Prime Minister statement on White Island eruption
    I have had the opportunity to be briefed on the details of the volcanic eruption of Whakaari/White Island, off the coast of Whakatane in the Bay of Plenty.  The eruption happened at 2.11pm today.  It continues to be an evolving situation.  We know that there were a number of tourists ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt funds $100k for weather-hit communities
    Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare have today confirmed initial Government support of $100,000 for communities affected by the severe weather that swept across the South Island and lower North Island over the weekend. The contribution will be made to Mayoral relief funds across the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Death of NZ High Commissioner to Cook Islands
    New Zealand's High Commissioner to the Cook Islands, Tessa Temata, died in Palmerston North over the weekend, Foreign Minister Winston Peters said today. Ms Temata, 52, had recently returned to New Zealand for medical treatment. "On behalf of the Government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade, we extend ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Wellington rail upgrade full steam ahead
    Transport Minister Phil Twyford today announced construction is underway on Wellington commuter rail upgrades which will mean more frequent services and fewer breakdowns. The upgrades include converting the Trentham to Upper Hutt single track section to a double track, with a new signalling system, upgraded stations and level crossings, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Defence Climate Change Implementation Plan released
    Minister of Defence Ron Mark and Minister for Climate Change James Shaw have announced the release of a Defence Climate Change Implementation Work Plan, titled Responding to the Climate Crisis: An Implementation Plan.  The plan sets out a series of recommendations based on the 2018 New Zealand Defence Assessment, The ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    3 days ago
  • Govt releases funding to support South Canterbury
    A medium-scale adverse event has been declared for the South Canterbury district, which will see up to $50,000 in funding made available to support farming communities which have been significantly affected by recent heavy rain and flooding in the area, says Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor. “Two weeks of solid rain ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Speech at launch of Rethinking Plastics Report
    Thank you Professor Juliet Gerrard and your team for the comprehensive and extremely helpful report and recommendations. Thank you too to all the stakeholders and interested parties who have contributed ideas and thinking to it. “Making best practice, standard practice” is a great framework for change and the action plan ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Govt pledges next steps on plastic waste
    The Government will phase out more single-use plastics following the success of its single-use plastic bag ban earlier this year and the release today of a pivotal report for dealing with waste. Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has welcomed the Rethinking Plastics in Aotearoa New Zealandreport, released by her Chief Science Advisor ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • International student enrolments grow in universities and the regions
    International education continues to thrive as the Government focuses on quality over quantity, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said. The tuition revenue from international education increased to $1.16 billion last year with the average tuition fee per student increasing by $960. The total number of international students enrolled in New Zealand ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Speech to Government Economics Network 2019 Conference
    I want to talk about one of the most pressing issues in our national life: the housing crisis and the poor performance of our cities. The argument I want to make to you is that generations of urban land use policy have lacked a decent grounding in economics. The consequences ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • DHB leadership renewed and strengthened
    Health Minister Dr David Clark says new appointments to DHBs represent a significant changing of the guard, with 13 new chairs including four Māori chairs. Today 76 appointments have been announced to complement elected board members, as well as eight elected members appointed as either chair or deputy chair.  Four ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • Tabuteau to advance New Zealand’s trade and political interests with European partners
    Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Fletcher Tabuteau, is travelling to Germany, Poland, Austria, and Spain next week to bolster New Zealand’s political and trade relationships in Europe. While in Spain, Mr Tabuteau will represent New Zealand at the 14th Asia-Europe (ASEM) Foreign Ministers’ Meeting in Madrid. “New Zealand strongly supports ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Statement from the Prime Minister on Kris Faafoi
    “I’ve spoken to Minister Faafoi, who has apologised for his poor handling of this issue,” Jacinda Ardern said. “I have confidence in Kris as a hardworking and effective Minister, but this should have been dealt with in a much clearer manner, and I’ve made my views on that very clear ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Tonga-New Zealand Joint Ministerial Forum
    Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters met with Tongan Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pohiva Tu'i'onetoa in Wellington today. The pair signed a Statement of Partnership setting out joint priorities for cooperation out to 2023.  “We welcomed Prime Minister Tu'i'onetoa on his first visit to New Zealand as Prime Minister. Tonga ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Shooting in Kurow
    The Minister of Police Stuart Nash says his sympathies are with the family of a man who died after being shot by Police in Kurow. “Initial reports are that Police were called by a family member to help the man who was threatening to harm himself,” Mr Nash says. “However ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Government delivers funding boost for ethnic communities
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